Friday, 27 January 2012

Early Review: Incarnate

-          Jodi Meadows
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books - Published on 31st January 2012
E-Arc courtesy of netgalley and Harper Collins
Ana is new. For thousands of years in Range, a million souls have been reincarnated over and over, keeping their memories and experiences from previous lifetimes. When Ana was born, another soul vanished, and no one knows why.

Even Ana’s own mother thinks she’s a nosoul, an omen of worse things to come, and has kept her away from society. To escape her seclusion and learn whether she’ll be reincarnated, Ana travels to the city of Heart, but its citizens are suspicious and afraid of what her presence means. When dragons and sylph attack the city, is Ana to blame?

Sam believes Ana’s new soul is good and worthwhile. When he stands up for her, their relationship blooms. But can he love someone who may live only once, and will Ana’s enemies—human and creature alike—let them be together? Ana needs to uncover the mistake that gave her someone else’s life, but will her quest threaten the peace of Heart and destroy the promise of reincarnation for all?
What first drew me to this book was the absolutely beautiful cover – the colours, the butterfly over the face and the stark white background really makes this stand out among various dark covers and girls in red dresses.  The story has a great hook as well – for thousands of years everyone has been re-incarnated when they die, living life after life, until one day a new soul is born for the first time. How would she fit in? What happened to the soul she ‘replaced’? This intriguing start seems set for a philosophical exploration of what it means to be human. However, most of the book is based on Ana falling for Sam and how they can breach the gap between them, which left me personally a little disappointed.
The world building is a little sketchy in places – reincarnation is explained along with how people are drawn into the same studies life after life. However, I was never sure if Heart was an advanced technology civilisation as seen by the SED (basically an i-Phone) and soul scanners – or more of a middle ages society with people keeping their own chickens and using horses. People also seemed remarkable unquestioning of the continual dragon attacks on the city. The family aspect was difficult to get my head around and I never really felt fully immersed in the world.
However, Ana was in a unique position and I liked her determination even if she seemed much too defensive at times. I wasn’t overly keen on her immediately falling for the first guy she meets, but Sam was a strong character, who genuinely seemed concerned about Ana and wanting to do right by her. His friend Stef made a strong impression as well. The writing was strong and I always wanted to know how the story would finish. There is a gem of a story here which is worth exploring – but the teen love didn’t convince me and I never really felt the stakes were that high. However, I have some hopes that the next books in the series will focus more on question of dragons and souls and less on romance.
Recommended for fans of Leigh Fallon and L.A. Weatherly. 6 out of 10


  1. I am seeing this one everywhere lately but, I fear it fails to impress me much :/

  2. I've been thinking to wait on this one until more books come out. Strong writing... hm... yes... I will wait. Great review. Helped me to decide!

  3. I'm drawn in by the cover too. I mean, how could you not be?

    But I have to admit, I'm not feeling too enticed anymore if the romance was a bit disappointing.

  4. I didn't rate this much either, it was a real struggle to finish.